JoJo Domann, Nebraska OLB | NFL Draft Scouting Report

In an uncertain 2022 NFL Draft linebacker class, how does the scouting report of experienced Nebraska OLB JoJo Domann stack up?

Every year, you have players who blur the lines between position groups. Nebraska OLB and NFL Draft prospect JoJo Domann is one of those players, and his scouting report attracts plenty of intrigue as a result. Domann’s NFL projection is complicated, but it could be a fruitful one for the team that knows how to use him.

JoJo Domann NFL Draft Profile

  • Position: Linebacker
  • School: Nebraska
  • Current Year: Redshirt Senior
  • Height: 6’0 7/8″
  • Weight: 226 pounds
  • Wingspan: 74 3/8″
  • Length: 30 1/4″
  • Hand: 9 3/8″

JoJo Domann Scouting Report

Few college football players have had a longer, more winding path to the 2022 NFL Draft than Domann, but it’s proven to be rewarding for the Nebraska OLB. After showing out in 2021 and showing off his skills in the Reese’s Senior Bowl, Domann is starting to get more love on the NFL Draft circuit.

Domann won’t be every team’s favorite type of linebacker, but there’s a definite role for him at the NFL level. What does Domann do well, and where does he project to play as a professional?

JoJo Domann’s athletic profile

Off of physical profile alone, Domann is an incredibly intriguing player. He’s listed as an OLB coming out of Nebraska, and he has the size of a linebacker at 6’1″, 226 pounds. However, with his athleticism, Domann can fulfill a multitude of different roles — going so far as to play overhang slot and safety in certain situations.

Domann is incredibly versatile, and a lot of it stems from his athleticism. He’s an explosive athlete who accelerates quickly in the open field. He gears up quickly out of transitions and barrels toward plays. Domann’s explosiveness, combined with his hustle, also affords him solid range. He can track plays from sideline to sideline, as well as hawk on passes in the short and intermediate ranges.

In coverage, Domann has light, active feet, with fairly fluid hips for his size. The Nebraska OLB stacks direction changes well in space. He sinks his hips and bursts out of breaks, and he’s a very smooth and fluid mover when he has to adapt. When positioned effectively, Domann has the athleticism to close ground quickly in the box. He also uses his explosiveness to bring a ton of heat as a blitzer.

Execution beyond the physical traits

Domann is an experienced player, and that’s undoubtedly had a positive effect on his refinement. The Nebraska OLB has great instincts when he has to manage space in coverage. He follows the QB’s eyes and has shown to position himself well between routes. Domann has a feel for spacing, and with his spatial awareness, he passes off routes and clamps down on receivers underneath.

Expanding on Domann’s coverage ability, the Nebraska OLB is physical at stems. He’s a competitive, combative player in short areas but also has the fluidity to quickly pick up receivers and shadow them up the seam. Additionally, Domann is urgent in response to passes. He reacts fairly quickly to breaks and surges toward the ball. At the catch point, he has good ball skills and actively seeks to disrupt with his hands.

While coverage is Domann’s greatest strength, he also shows promise in other phases. The Nebraska OLB generally takes good angles coming downhill, and he dishes out physicality. Domann has a nose for the football, and he’s an urgent and energetic player in pursuit. He can sneak through congestion and cut off developing runs. He can also engage blocks and flow to the football in the box.

Domann clearly has the want-to as a tackler, and he’s a good form tackler who envelopes ball carriers. He’s shown he can disengage blocks and surge into the tackle point.

Areas for improvement

While Domann is very good in coverage, he sometimes gives too much cushion in zone, and he can be more disciplined with his positioning at times. Meanwhile, in man coverage, Domann can be a bit too grabby when matching receivers. His closing speed in space is only solid. He gears up quickly but maxes out in long ranges.

In the box, Domann tends to overshoot tackling angles coming downhill. He takes good angles, but he can be a bit too aggressive when finishing, running himself out of plays. Domann sometimes goes too low when engaging blockers, sacrificing his balance. Additionally, his lacking length makes it difficult to get off blocks against larger players. Domann isn’t small, but he’s a bit lighter for a linebacker and can be swept up in congestion at times.

Going further, Domann could further refine his instincts in the box, even if he’s relatively solid there. The Nebraska OLB can be a bit hesitant when reading option plays and also be a hair late reacting to them. Moreover, he occasionally bites hard on misdirections and doesn’t always follow the ball.

Among other things, Domann’s lacking length sometimes prevents him from wrapping up cleanly in space. Occasionally, he can overset and get caught flat-footed in coverage.

JoJo Domann’s 2022 NFL Draft scouting report overview

It’s worth noting up front that Domann does have two ACL tears in his history. In addition, he’s going to be a 25-year-old rookie. Domann’s a stellar character off the field, and he hasn’t seemed to lose much athleticism from his injuries. Thus, there’s a chance he cracks the top 100. However, it’s more likely Domann gets selected early-to-mid Day 3. Nevertheless, from there, he can exceed his draft billing in the right role.

Teams that cater to Domann’s versatility should benefit from his presence on the field. In the box, the Nebraska OLB profiles well as a weak-side, coverage-oriented linebacker. But he also profiles especially well as a hybrid defensive back. Let him rotate between the overhang slot and strong safety in two-high alignments, and he could present some appeal.

Domann has the size and athleticism to be an intriguing fit at safety. He closes ground quickly with his explosiveness, but he’s also fluid and instinctive enough in coverage to hold up in space — even if he doesn’t have top-end speed.

Domann is probably best in the short and intermediate ranges as a hybrid S/LB with big slot capabilities. There, his closing speed, fluidity, and high-motor style can be maximized in several phases. And early on, if he’s not a sub-package player right away, the Nebraska OLB can provide great value on special teams.

Domann’s Player Profile

Domann didn’t just become versatile overnight at Nebraska. He’s always been the everyman for his team, even dating back to high school. At Pine Creek High School in Colorado Springs, Domann basically did everything.

As a junior, he caught 49 passes for 797 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also rushed for 205 yards and a score, picked up 61 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, and 7 interceptions, and served as the kicker for his team. He added punter to the list of duties as a senior in 2015, averaging 43 yards per attempt. Somewhere in the United Kingdom, fellow NFL Draft Analyst Oli Hodgkinson is whispering “for the brand” triumphantly.

Domann was productive in many facets, but his future rested on the defensive side of the ball. Domann was a three-star recruit in the 2016 class and had offers from many Western and Midwestern schools, including Colorado, Colorado State, Kansas State, Arizona State, and Nevada. Despite the offers in his local region, Domann chose Nebraska and took the opportunity to play Big Ten football.

Domann’s career at Nebraska

Domann’s career at Nebraska was rather tumultuous. The Nebraska OLB mainly played on special teams in 2016 and missed the entire 2017 season due to injury. He didn’t see his first defensive action until 2018 but began to flash after seeing the field for extended periods. He took reps at both safety and linebacker early on but became a full-time coverage LB in 2019.

With his athletic ability and feel for the game, Domann was able to provide coveted versatility to the Huskers’ defense. He played in every game in 2019, starting six contests, logging 52 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, an interception, 5 pass deflections, and 2 forced fumbles in the process. In a shortened 2020 campaign, Domann came back with 58 tackles, 6.5 TFL, 5 deflections, and 2 more forced fumbles.

By 2021, Domann was the elder statesman on Nebraska’s defense — and he played like it. With a unique combination of physical ability and experience, Domann put up terrific stats. Once again serving as a full-time starter, the Nebraska OLB accumulated 71 tackles, 9 TFL, 2 interceptions, 3 deflections, and 2 forced fumbles.

Domann earned All-Big Ten honors in both 2020 and 2021, and his 2021 play helped secure a trip to the Reese’s Senior Bowl, where he flashed as a dynamic talent at the second level.

Domann’s NFL Draft ascension

Domann has accomplished plenty on the field, but many at Nebraska will remember him for his impact off of it. He’s widely respected as a leader in the locker room, and he left a tangible mark on the community outside of it.

The Nebraska OLB is a frequent volunteer. He visits local hospitals, and he used the new NIL opportunities in 2021 to provide basic necessities for 70,000 underprivileged children.

His injury history and his advanced age may dilute his stock somewhat. Nevertheless, whoever gets Domann is getting a top-notch character in the locker room, as well as a versatile player willing to take on multiple roles.

Special teams may be his purpose early on, but Domann has the ability to be a potential chess piece and sub-package player in the box. He may not be able to cover every slot receiver, but he has enough explosiveness, fluidity, instincts, and urgency as a playmaker to provide utility in a hybrid role.

Tony Pauline’s Scouting Report on JoJo Domann

Positives: Undersized, athletic linebacker who plays smart, tough football. Breaks down well and effectively uses his hands. Shows great range on the field and covers a terrific amount of area. Stays with assignments, shows great recognition, and plays with a nasty attitude.

Flows to the action, quickly locates the ball handler, and makes a lot of plays in space. Effective in coverage and shows the ability to run downfield with receivers. Tracks the pass in the air and has a nice break to the throw. Sells out on the blitz. Possesses a closing burst of speed to get to the action.

Negatives: Not a strong or stout linebacker. Has tackles broken. Gets caught up in blocks.

Analysis: Domann was a productive linebacker at Nebraska and is a terrific combination of instincts and athleticism. Size is an issue, though Domann could be very effective in a one-gap system.

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